I am currently thinking of buying a 97 E420 with 45k in mint condition.
Before I make my choice how does this compare with the BMW 5 series? I drove
a 1999 528i about a year ago and it was gutless and I didnt like it, so my
BMW impression right now isn't that great. Opinions welcome =)
Try the 540. Back when the E420 had come out I test drove that and a BMW
540i auto. Well, I felt the BMW was so much better that to this day I have
the 540. Now consider that the 5 previous cars were all mercedes.
I do not know about 5 series and they may compare well with low miles. But I
own a few high mileage (+250k miles) E-Class cars, and a high mileage 3
series BMW (+100K) and there is no comparison as the miles add up. Both are
nice cars, well engineered, reliable, and generally solid, but the BMW is
plagued with more rattles, squeaks and loose parts than any of the MBs with
twice the mileage. The 1998 E320 we just bought with 85K miles is amazing -
still runs, rides and handles like new.
(as you asked - just an opinion :^)
that perfromance is if you drive on the redline all the time,, not realisic
for everyday driving , I would prefer the lower end torque of the 8 cylinder
around 3500 to 4500 you have some juice as opposed to 6000 rpm shifts all
the time... -- do the 6000 rpm shifts with the 540 and you can have some fun
I have had the pleasure of owning both cars. An '02 BMW 528i New and now I
have a '94 Mercedes E420 w/128K on it. Here are the issues I had with the
BMW. First the car sounds, starts, looks, runs, etc. great! BUT you have to
DRIVE the BMW, you can't RIDE in the driver seat on cruise. I felt the
seating position was to much like a cockpit. When I was on cruise there was
no place to put my feet, or right leg other than under the brake and gas. My
right leg rested against the console and gets VERY sore after a bit from
rubbing. The power was NEVER an issue with this car. I drove from
Portsmouth, NH to Burlington, VT twice a week and if anyone knows RT. 89 you
will know it has some hills. I used to own a '00 GMC Yukon that would shift
up and down out of over drive 14 times and was VERY painful. BLAAAAAA,
bruuuuummmmmm, BLAAAAAAA, brummmmm. The BMW shifted maybe two times when
traveling at 80 MPH and did it very smooth. Now the Mercedes E420 I own now.
The car is somewhat the same seating position as the BMW but alittle more on
the touring comfort side. Not quite such a race position as the 528i. If the
front of the seat would come up higher so that it lifted your legs up and
away from the gas I think it would be perfect. The fit, finish, sound of the
V8 and did I mention the POWER? Oh my GOD this car fly's. The E420 has a
ride that is like no other. Very smooth, refined. When you press the gas
starting out from a stop it's just soooo smooth. The BMW is all about road
feel and not as smooth as the Mercedes. Don't get me wrong both cars I loved
but for different reasons. If you want performance on a reasonable level,
with awesome handling the BMW is you choice. If you want to have the power,
handling in a moderate form, comfort and a smooth ride the E420 is the car
for you. Feel free to e-mail me direct at email@example.com if you want
to talk more about this as I have owned both, plus SAAB's all my life.
I'd always take a MB over a BMW, unless you want a stick. Overtime MB
hold up much better. I would do some searches and see if there were
any problems 97E classes, like tranny problems and/or wire problems.
I know the older 320/280 engines were prone to head gaskets leaks.
If the price is right, and there are no known problems, buy it
I don't like the body, but it is a damn nice car.
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